New Hanover County, North Carolina Genealogy

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New Hanover County, North Carolina
Map of North Carolina highlighting New Hanover County
Location in the state of North Carolina
Map of the U.S. highlighting North Carolina
Location of North Carolina in the U.S.
Founded 1729
County Seat Wilmington
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United States  Gotoarrow.png  North Carolina  Gotoarrow.png New Hanover County

County Courthouse

New Hanover County Courthouse
3rd & Princess St Rm 103
Wilmington, NC 28401-4090
Phone: 910-341-7125

Courthouse burned 1798, 1819, & 1840
1810 Census Missing
Reg of Deeds has birth, marriage, death and land records
Clerk Superior Court has divorce, probate and court records[1]

New Hanover created from Edgecombe 15 Nov 1777

Historical Facts

Parent County

1729--New Hanover was created from Craven County.
County seat: Wilmington [2]

Boundary Changes

Neighboring Counties

Brunswick | Pender

Record Loss

Courthouse fires have destroyed some records through the years.


Bible Records



  • New Hanover County Cemeteries lists public, church, private, and family cemteries with some links to Find A Grave and Google Maps. Good information on hard to read tombstones, cleaning tombstones, cleaning and restoring cemeteries, types of grave markers. North Carolina GenWeb.
  • Pine Forest Cemetery is a historical African American burial ground dating back to 1860 and the final resting place of many notable citizens. It is located on 15 acres in the city of Wilmington at the north end of 16th Street and Rankin. The Wilmington Journal published an article (May 2012) on the history of the cemetery with contact information for donations towards the preservation and upkeep of the cemetery. Search known burials and contribute information at Find A Grave. Learn more about Pine Forest Cemetery from the Folk Art Society of America.
  • Cemetery Census of New Hanover County North Carolina cemeteries lists interments for Federal Point Methodist, Greenlawn Memorial Park, and Oakdale cemeteries.


For tips on accessing New Hanover County, North Carolina Genealogy census records online, see: North Carolina Census.

Church Records

LDS Ward and Branch Records

  • Wilmington

Court Records

Emigration and Immigration



It is anticipated that this bibliography will eventually identify all known family histories published about residents of this county. Use this list to:

  • Locate publications about direct ancestors
  • Find the most updated accounts of an ancestor's family
  • Identify publications, to quote Elizabeth Shown Mills, about an ancestor's "FAN Club" [Friends, Associates, and Neighbors]


Land and Property



Early migration routes to and from New Hanover County for European settlers included:[3]


Revolutionary War
Civil War
Civil War Battle

The following Civil War battles were fought in New Hanover County.  

Map showing Civil War battles in North Carolina.

Civil War Confederate units

Brief history, counties where recruited, etc.

-1st Regiment, North Carolina Infantry
-2nd Regiment, North Carolina Infantry
-3rd Regiment, North Carolina Infantry
-7th Regiment, North Carolina Infantry
-8th Regiment, North Carolina Infantry

Naturalization and Citizenship


North Carolina Newspaper Digitization Project, North Carolina State Archives. Search full text historical newspapers published in Wilmington.



Probate Records

Minutes of the Pleas and Quarter Session Court 1738-42; 1759-1769 and General Index. (contains estates, inventories, wills, deeds proved, administrators appointed, orphans, etc.) North Carolina Pioneers ($)


Vital Records

Search online public record databases of the New Hanover County Register of Deeds, including birth and death certificates, and marriage records.




Family History Centers

Family History Centers are also located in Shallotte, Jacksonville, Kinston, and Myrtle Beach.


New Hanover County Public Libraries

Main Library and Law Library
201 Chestnut Street
Wilmington NC 28401

Northeast Regional Library
1241 Military Cutoff Rd
Wilmington NC 28405

Myrtle Grove Library
5155 South College Rd
Wilmington NC 28412

Carolina Beach Library
300 Cape Fear Blvd
Carolina Beach NC 28428


African American Heritage Museum of Wilmington
PO Box 968 Wilmington NC 28402

Cape Fear Museum of History and Science
814 Market Street
Wilmington NC 28401
Phone 910-798-4350
Fax 910-798-4382


Old New Hanover Genealogical Society ONHGS
PO Box 2536
Wilmington NC 28402-2536

ONHGS additional contact:
New Hanover COunty Public Library
North Carolina Room
201 Chestnut Steet
Wilmington NC 28402

Web Sites


Populated Places


  1. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), New Hanover County, North Carolina. Page 512 At various libraries (WorldCat); FHL Book 973 D27e 2002.
  2. The Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America,10th ed. (Draper, UT:Everton Publishers, 2002).
  3. Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 10th ed. (Draper, Utah: Everton Pub., 2002), 847-61. (FHL Book 973 D27e 2002) WorldCat entry., and William E. Myer, Indian Trails of the Southeast. (Nashville, Tenn.: Blue and Gray Press, 1971), 12-14, and the book's pocket map "The Trail System of the Southeastern United States in the early Colonial Period" (1923). (FHL Book 970.1 M992i) WorldCat entry.
  4. Heritage Preservation Services, Civil War Battle Summaries by State, (accessed 8 August, 2012)
  5. Heritage Preservation Services, Civil War Battle Summaries by State, (accessed 8 August, 2012)
  6. Heritage Preservation Services, Civil War Battle Summaries by State, (accessed 9 August, 2012)
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